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  • Kristin Cooper

Advancing and Commercializing Energy Efficiency in CA Industrial, Agricultural and Water Sector

This solicitation is to accelerate the development and commercialization of promising precommercial technologies in California’s dairy and municipal wastewater treatment sectors.


For Dairies:

• Identify and demonstrate emerging electricity saving technologies that can directly reduce electricity and GHG emissions in the milk and cheese processing lifecycle.


For Municipal Wastewater:

• Demonstrate at a municipal wastewater treatment facility the operation of emerging advanced primary treatment and/or advanced secondary treatment technologies for municipal wastewater treatment.


Projects must fall within one of the following project groups:

• Group 1: Advanced Energy Management and Monitoring of the Dairy Industry

• The aim is to digitize the dairy and dairy adjacent industries (milk, cheese, and their associated products) through the adoption of advanced sensors, data management, machine learning, and best practices to optimize electric equipment operations.

• The goal is to make the technology applicable and useable for other dairies and industrial operations beyond those participating as a demonstration site under this solicitation.

• Technologies sought are either pre-commercial or underutilized and are currently at TRL of 7-8 with the expectation to progress up one or more levels by the end of the project.

• The goal of projects from this group is to demonstrate the technology at multiple sites in order to develop a performance baseline for dairies of different sizes and configurations across the state.


The applicant will propose at least five project sites:

• At least three must be identified by name with commitment letters at the time of application.

• Provide an installation price per site, identify all project fixed and variable costs, and provide an estimated electrical and GHG reduction potential per site.

• Independent 3rd party M&V – to measure and quantify project benefits.


Example research includes, but is not limited to the following:

• Software development and application of machine learning to control algorithms for optimization of electricity intensive processes in milk/cheese/related dairy operations.

• Energy-efficient programming, to optimize electricity intensive equipment used in the dairy/agriculture industry.

• Machine learning and cloud computing integration to optimize operations and production. This technology is intended to be used and result in benefits applicable to many similar sites, not just the specific demonstration site(s) under investigation as part of the proposed project. • Software and sensors to monitor for and identify leaks or losses of dairy process stream liquids and steam, electrical drawdowns, thermal leaks, compressed air and other electrical inefficiencies.



• Group 2: Advanced Treatment Processes for Wastewater Treatment Plants

• The goal is to demonstrate (at scale) that advanced primary and secondary treatment can increase energy efficiency and increase overall treatment plant capacity while reducing operational and maintenance costs.

• Technologies must be at technology readiness level of 5-8 with the expectation to progress up one or more levels by the end of the project.

• Technologies must have a pathway to commercialization and deployment in California’s municipal wastewater treatment facilities to ensure the benefits of the project will extend beyond the scope and term of the grant agreement.

• Applicants may propose to focus on advanced primary treatment, advanced secondary treatment, or both at the same facility.

• For projects that propose both, the municipal wastewater treatment plant influent must be treated by an advanced primary treatment process then by the advanced secondary and the entire treatment process is kept separate from the conventional secondary treatment process. • The demonstration will be at sufficient scale – treating at a minimum 500K gals/day.

• Project must have an Independent 3rd party M&V – to measure and quantify project benefits.


Example research includes, but is not limited to the following:

• Advanced primary treatment methods

• Cloth depth filters

• Compressible medium filters

• Micro-screen

• Rotating belt filter/screen, and

• Other novel filters or filter media

• Advanced secondary treatment methods

• Aerobic granular sludge

• Anaerobic ammonium oxidation


Match Funding

• A minimum of 20% match funding is required.

• Applicants that provide more than 20% match funding may receive additional points during the scoring phase.


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